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Making Security Technology Intelligent - SnT-IEE Computer Vision Lab

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Published on Tuesday, 06 March 2012

SnT and Luxembourg-based sensing specialist IEE inaugurated their joint Computer Vision laboratory focused on designing new and practical sensor systems for security technology applications.

The field of security and safety technology is currently undergoing some radical changes. As a result, the demand for intelligent systems capable of managing security-relevant situations in public buildings while, at the same time, offering support for subsequent data-analysis, is increasing. To actively help shape this research and acquire a technological edge, SnT and IEE entered into a strategic partnership in 2011, which in turn led to the creation of the Computer Vision laboratory. The laboratory's goal is to combine the basic research conducted at SnT and the applied research conducted by IEE to create optimal conditions in which sensor research questions can be successfully addressed.

One important goal of the new SnT-IEE partnership is the fusion and extraction of information from multiple sensors, for example 2D and 3D cameras. SnT researcher Dr. Djamila Aouada, who is managing a research project focusing on this area, says: “IEE has developed a 3D MLI SensorTM , based on the optical time of flight principle, that can capture depth information – albeit at relatively low resolution and with a high noise level. At SnT, we have created algorithms that can combine the data from this 3D sensor in real-time with the data from a 2D camera, thereby obtaining a significantly higher resolution in the 3D images with reduced noise and artifacts.” Dr. Bruno Mirbach, Algorithm Group Leader at IEE, confirms: “The results are very impressive, and are important for further developing IEE’s 3D MLI SensorTM .”

The next step for the researchers is to further increase the resolution, as well as increasing the range of the sensor and the number of 3D images delivered per second. The SnT-IEE Computer Vision laboratory is fully equipped with all the state-of-the-art experimental instruments needed to bring this work to fruition and to tackle new challenges. According to Dr. Aouada it will be a particular challenge to make it possible to analyze biometric data from the hybrid 2D/3D camera. The long-term goal is to explore the data captured by multiple sensors for automatic action recognition and for facial recognition, for example in security zones.

SnT director Prof. Björn Ottersten says that in the strategic partnership, SnT is responsible for the pure research. “We are familiar with the current state of research,” he says. “We know where the developmental lines are drawn, and we know what is scientifically possible and necessary in technological development.” Dr. Mirbach says that on this basis, SnT and IEE generate new knowledge, which they then incorporate into product developments. “This gives IEE an important technological boost, something which normally only happens to companies with large research facilities,” he says. “It illustrates how very fortunate we are to be able to partner with SnT, given that both SnT and IEE are Luxembourg-based."

About IEE

IEE S.A. is a privately-held innovative developer of specialized sensing systems. Founded in 1989 and headquartered in Luxembourg, the company has operations in Europe, the US and Asia. IEE is a global leader in automotive safety sensing systems for occupant detection and classification. The company also provides people and object sensing solutions that enhance building safety and management. IEE’s solutions are dedicated to the following markets: Transportation & Automotive, Public & Commercial Infrastructure, Consumer and Medical & Healthcare. IEE employs 1,600 people worldwide and over 10 % of the company's workforce is engaged in Research & Development. www.iee.lu